Wham Bam Thank U Jam 2015 - Arrows of Neon-0554The Wham Bam Thank U Jam, now in its 6th year , continues to be one of the most magical weekends of the year! This time around, the folks at Love of Life Inc. treated music lovers to a celebration that they will never forget!

Wham Bam Thank U Jam 2015 - Fan Photos-0095If you missed this year’s celebration or haven’t been to any of the celebrations yet, you truly owe it to yourself to experience this magical weekend at least once! It will change your life! There were a ton of mystical, magical moments during the three day celebration and Music Connection Dayton (The Official Media Partner of Wham Bam) was there to catch all the action. It is my great pleasure today to share a few of my favorite memories with you!

WEDNESDAY AND THURSDAY

My wife, Lisa, and I arrived Wednesday night to enjoy a little quiet time and to hang out with the Wham Bam crew before the big show. Wham Bam Thank U Jam 2015 - Buildiing of the Stage-0059We had a blast just sitting around the camp fire and reminiscing about Wham Bam’s past.

Thursday morning, we decided to take a look at the new stage that we’ve heard so much about, and as we admired the new stage, Brad Denson (Lost On Iddings, Miami Valley Music Fest, Square Roots Records) rolled in with the massive blow up stage cover that’s the same one used by the Miami Valley Music Fest. The cover fit the new stage perfectly, looked amazing, and really took the Wham Bam event up a notch!  I couldn’t wait for this shindig to get going!

Wham Bam Barn Jam

Photo by Steve Enscoe

While the celebration didn’t “officially” begin until Friday, the anticipation was too much for many music lovers who just couldn’t wait! Kimberly (my partner in crime and good friend) arrived late on Thursday evening with the very talented, Nathan Goff, and a Wham Bam newbie in tow, and Wham Bammers began to fill the bottom section of Hannon’s Camp America all day on Thursday in anticipation for what many call “the celebration of the year”. There was a lot of talk about how there were more folks already camped than in any previous year, and there was plenty of stargazing throughout the evening as the last of the Perseid Meteor lit up the sky!

As folks settled into their little piece of heaven on Thursday, things began to heat up on the barn stage. Eric and Melissa (MissWham Bam Thank U Jam 2015 - Eric and Melissa Henry-0089 Lissa) Henry came early to the celebration to host a pre Wham Bam Jam with a few of their talented friends. Lyle (Paradijm Shift) kicked things off with a few solo tunes to get us warmed up and then Eric & Melissa shook things up with some awesome blues. Melissa’s soulful voice and Eric’s Fender FR-50 resonator guitar echoed through the trees like a sweet summer breeze. Then things got a little funky when Dave Shurte and members of Mainline Funk took over the party barn. These guys lit things up with an array of funky goodness that lasted late into the night.

=====================================================================

FRIDAY

Kimberly was pulling triple duty this weekend performing with Far From Eden and Killed By Art on consecutive daysWham Bam Thank U Jam 2015 - Fan Photos-135 as well as helping to man our BRAND NEW event booth made possible by pledges made to our recent Kickstarter campaign. The Music Connection Dayton booth also served as the merch booth for many of the bands in attendance, complete with a shady popup for the bands to relax before and after their set. The music kicked off early on Friday, and we could hear Lyle, Smilin Joe, and Harlot rockin the barn as we prepared the booth and readied ourselves for a busy weekend!

We finished up our tasks just in time for me to catch the eclectic sights and sounds of the Keshvar Project. This ensemble combines the ancient sounds of the Middle East with the mesmerizing art of dance, providing one of the most unique and enjoyable performances of the weekend. Gild the Lily was up next and provided the final performance in the barn for the afternoon with an inspired collection Wham Bam Thank U Jam 2015 - Tony Herdman Band-0234of psychedelic, stoner rock.

From there, the party moved to Middle Earth (the main stage level and halfway point between the upper and lower levels of Hannon’s) where weWham Bam Thank U Jam 2015 - The Mainline Funk-0272 found the Tony Herdman Band rockin’ the campground, followed by the masters of improv, The Mainline Funk! Lucky for us, Wham Bam Thank U Jam 2015 - Killed By Art-0390our booth was right beside the soundboard, so we were assured not to miss any of the action! Kimberly and her band, Killed By Art, were next to hit the main stage. I have been itching to see these guys ever since the return of guitarist, Bill Kirkbride, a few months ago. Believe me when I say, it was well worth the wait!

First time Wham Bammers, Strange Creature, hit the stage next with their unique mix of Wham Bam Thank U Jam 2015 - Howard Brothers Band-0451blues, jazz, and folk.  They were followed up by the Howard Brothers Band, who’ve been on my radar for quite some time. The gritty, and at times just plain nasty, riffs of guitarist, Steven Howard, and the driving grooves of bassist, Aaron Howard, and Drummer, Tim Blankenship, were right up my alley. This power trio is the real deal! Also making their Wham Bam debut was Toledo’s Jojo Stella. These guys made a BIG splash with fans and fellow musicians alike. Wow! What a set!

Following Jojo Stella was the psychedelic jam band Lost on Iddings (LOI). LOI hit the Dayton Wham Bam Thank U Jam 2015 - Lost on Iddings-0521music scene back in 2005, but they recently added the always entertaining, Sean Finnigan, to the mix. These cats are a lot of fun, and they just keep getting better.

The task of closing out the first night of music fell upon the Grateful Dead tribute band, Arrows of Neon. Many Wham Bam Thank U Jam 2015 - Arrows of Neon-0537tribute bands fall short when it comes to capturing the essence of their predecessors; not the case with Arrows of Neon. Recreating the energy and spirit of the Dead is a great undertaking, and the responsibility is not taken lightly by these top notch musicians whose passion for the music of the Dead is evident each time they take the stage. The Arrows of Neon set at Wham Bam was amazing and a picture perfect way to end the first night of the celebration!

Check out more great pics from Thursday & Friday below. Photos by Jimmy & Lisa C.

Advertisements
Comments
  1. […] U Jam held August 14-16 at Hannon’s Camp America. Earlier in the week, I shared with you the first part of my Wham Bam experience. Now, it’s my pleasure to bring you Part 2 of this magical […]

    Like

Tell us what you think!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s